Bankjoy raises funding from Curql to grow its mobile banking platform for credit unions & community banks
Michael Duncan is a Detroit, Michigan native who led the development of payment systems for the states of California and Oregon. Later, also worked as a software developer at a local credit union called Michigan First Credit Union.
As part of his job, Duncan was responsible for the credit union’s Internet and mobile-banking platforms. Then one day, he stumbled upon a problem that would ultimately become the catalyst for him to launch a new fintech startup company.
Duncan felt that the technology used by the credit union at the time had an unwieldy user experience and was challenging for developers to handle. He also found similar shortcomings in the mobile banking platforms of other credit unions that were provided by business-to-business vendors.
“We felt that we could build a better system,” Duncan told the local news media. “We wanted to help people achieve goals and add some additional features that you don’t see in a lot of apps today.”
Then in 2015, Duncan decided to launch BankJoy, a Y Combinator and Bessemer Venture Partner-backed FinTech startup. Co-founded BankJoy with Weiwei Duncan, BankJoy offers modern banking technology, including mobile banking, online banking, e-statements, online account opening, loan applications, and AI-powered voice banking to credit unions — big and small.
To further grow its operations and support increasing customers’ demands, Bankjoy announced today it has raised new a funding round led by Curql Collective, with participation from several of Bankjoy’s current and prospective credit union clients, including AEA Credit Union, Community Wide Federal Credit Union and Statewide Federal Credit Union. The total amount of the transaction was not disclosed.
Curql Collective is a Credit Union Service Organization spurring fintech innovation for credit unions. Curql was launched in 2020 by a collective of credit unions, including former founders, operators, and leaders in the fintech and investment spaces.
Bankjoy will use the funding proceeds to support its continued growth and facilitate ongoing product innovation to provide a best-in-class digital banking experience and go after new opportunities.
“We are thrilled to bring Curql on as an investor as Bankjoy continues to grow, as this latest round of funding will allow us to pursue new opportunities to redefine the digital banking experience and help more community financial institutions thrive in an increasingly competitive environment,” Duncan said.
Today, Bankjoy’s clients include more than 60 financial institutions nationwide and the company’s end-to-end digital banking platform is now accessible to more than one million credit union members and bank account holders. Led by a team of credit union executives, Bankjoy delivers modern banking technology, including mobile and online banking, e-statements, online account opening, online loan origination, and conversational AI to financial institutions of all sizes.
“As we see interest rates continue to rise, competition for deposits will likely intensify over the next 12 months among financial institutions and these trends will influence the digital transformation strategies for community banks and credit unions,” Duncan said.
He also added: “Online and mobile banking apps have a serious impact on member and account holder satisfaction. Research from Deloitte reveals that frequent mobile banking users, defined as individuals who accessed mobile banking at least once in every two weeks in the last year, are more satisfied with their primary financial institution than non-users, demonstrating that the digital banking experience plays an important role in helping financial institutions retain and grow deposits.”
Commenting on the funding, Curql Collective President & CEO Nick Evens said: “We are proud to invest in Bankjoy, as we believe the right technology can positively impact how credit unions engage with their members and how members engage with their money. We look forward to supporting Bankjoy’s next growth phase and helping more forward-thinking credit unions deliver digital banking experiences that exceed their members’ expectations.”